Tottenham - Stoke City Preview: Hosts haven't lost four Premier League games on the bounce in over six years
With the events of last Saturday still reverberating around the country, Spurs will have to overcome the emotion and get back on track after three losses on the trot
By Alex Young
Walker, Kaboul, King, Assou-Ekotto
Van der Vaart, Parker, Modric, Bale
Wilkinson, Huth, Shawcross, Wilson
Shotton, Whelan, Whitehead, Etherington
Harry Redknapp is likely to be without Aaron Lennon as the winger continues his recovery from a hamstring strain picked up at the beginning of March, but striker Emmanuel Adebayor is in line for a return after overcoming his own hamstring injury and should come straight into the starting line-up.
Forgotten man Heurelho Gomes remains sidelined with a knee injury and is not expected back until the middle of April.
It’s good news all round for Tony Pulis as he has no new injury worries with suspended striker Ricardo Fuller the only unavailable player.
Stoke could line-up almost identically to their Anfield trip, with Jon Walters and Peter Crouch starting up front together and Matthew Etherington hoping to make a similar impact to his performance in the reverse fixture, with two goals, on Wednesday night.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Tottenham have failed to keep a clean sheet in each of their seven Premier League meetings with Stoke City.
- Emmanuel Adebayor (pictured right) has been caught offside 44 times this season, the most in the Premier League.
- White Hart Lane has seen 99 draws in the Premier League era.
- Spurs haven't lost four Premier League games in a row since November 2004 and haven't lost back to back home games since September 2008.
- Despite losing their last three Premier League games, Spurs still have more points (after 28 games) than in any previous Premier League season.
- Stoke's Matthew Etherington has scored four goals in his last four Premier League appearances against Spurs.
- Stoke have scored a league high 37% of their goals from headers.
- The Potters have conceded a league-high 54% of their goals in the first half of games this season.
- Stoke have scored the highest proportion of set piece goals in the Premier League (59%).
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Top 3 Predictions
Tottenham 2-0 Stoke City
- 18.78 %
Tottenham 1-1 Stoke City
- 14.25 %
Tottenham 2-1 Stoke City
- 11.54 %
|Premier League (EPL)||12 May 2013||Stoke City 1 - Tottenham 2|
|Premier League (EPL)||22 Dec 2012||Tottenham 0 - Stoke City 0|
|Premier League (EPL)||21 Mar 2012||Tottenham 1 - Stoke City 1|
|Premier League (EPL)||11 Dec 2011||Stoke City 2 - Tottenham 1|
|Capital One Cup (CCUP)||20 Sep 2011||Stoke City 0 - Tottenham 0|
|18 Dec 2013||Tottenham 1 - West Ham 2||CCUP|
|15 Dec 2013||Tottenham 0 - Liverpool 5||EPL|
|12 Dec 2013||Tottenham 4 - Anzhi Makhachkala 1||EL|
|7 Dec 2013||Sunderland 1 - Tottenham 2||EPL|
|4 Dec 2013||Fulham 1 - Tottenham 2||EPL|
|23||Rafael van der Vaart||Midfielder|
|17||Giovani dos Santos||Striker|
|Rafael van der Vaart|
Now that Van der Vaart has returned, he will be looking to pop up and give support from the wing to add to his tally of four assists so far this season.
There were claims of handball in the build-up to Stoke’s opener, before Shawcross appeared to handle Defoe’s effort on the line to safety. In addition, Adebayor had a goal incorrectly ruled offside before Kaboul was sent packing for a second, debatable red card.
All in all, Spurs are after revenge. They have had a poor run of late, and the events of last Saturday will loom large I’m sure. That must have an effect on the players. With this in mind, and Stoke’s antithetical tactical approach, I’m going for a draw.